3 Simple Tips for Analaysing Fantasy Matchups

Research is extremely important in Daily Fantasy Sports. Not only do you need to know which players are underpriced, you need to assess which matchups are favourable for both players and teams. Some matchups are more favourable than others, obviously. The real question is how do we determine which matchups to target? It can be quite an extensive process, but there are a few quick-fix options that can help streamline the process.

1. Ins and Outs/Lineups

One of the easiest ways to determine which game to target is to look at the ins and outs. If the Warriors are missing Stephen Curry and Draymond Green (like they were last week), then that means a large boost for the rest of the squad. As we know, minute allocation and usage are two of the most important factors to assess when considering any player. If there’s an injury or a lineup change then that’s something you need to take advantage of. You should also check how the replacements have fared in any other starts. For example, Marcus Smart and Aron Baynes are likely to see increased usage today if Kyrie Irving and Al Horford miss today. Looking back we can see that Smart has scored 30+fantasy points in 3 of his 4 starts this year.

2. Possessions/Pace of play

One of the best indicators for knowing which games to target is possessions, or pace of play. The faster the game, the more possessions, which means more opportunities to amass points, rebounds, assists, steals and blocks. Targeting fast-paced matchups is one of the sure fire ways to determine if a game will be high scoring.

When determining pace, there are many ways you can do it. Using traditional betting Over/Unders is the easiest way to quickly determine the number of possessions likely to happen in a game. The higher the line for total points, the higher the pace and the more likely a matchup is for high scores. However, there are more nuanced ways you can assess pace and doing your own research can give you an additional edge.

NBA.com/stats have their own pace of play stats, but there are many others out there, you just have to find them. Research has been conducted that shows teams in the top 10 playing each other often leads to extremely fast games, while teams in the bottom 10 playing one another are often games you want to avoid. Looking at which teams play at the fastest paces and targeting two fast-paced teams against one another is a great way to give yourself the best chance at high fantasy scores. 

3. Defense

It’s a no-brainer that defense matters, but how do we quantify it for fantasy purposes? The basic way is to look at nba.com/stats and look at a team’s defensive rating, but that only gives you a small picture. One of the best ways is to look at Rotowire’s (free) defense vs position metrics. Although they are designed for Fanduel, they give you some sort of idea of how teams perform against opposition players. This really helps you know who to target – for example, point guards vs Phoenix (who concede more points to PGs than anyone).